When you’re one bagette away from Paris
As I’ve talked about from time to time on this blog, I run a small software company. We specialize in using measurement and feedback to help you plan and accomplish what you want. That’s why the company is called Truly Accomplished.
With a name like that, there are times when I find myself feeling really inadequate to the task of bringing this amazing thing into the world. I believe in it with my heart and soul. I’ve done everything I can to make it amazing. And it is. I’m really proud of it.
But the price to get it there has been high. This year has been one long sleepless night spent liquidating retirement funds, working long hours, waking up at 3am worrying about it. And then worrying about the worrying. And on from there.
It’s part of why this blog is something I keep at – it’s such a great reminder –to me too! – to enjoy the good stuff along the way.
Waiting for a version of software to be done is even worse than waiting for a baby to come. For about two months past the due date we lived with ‘it will be about another week.’ And I started to freak out that it wasn’t going to be done, ever.
And then suddenly, it was done.
Adorable as any new baby, making me forget my long nights.
Except that it brought with it one last joy I remember from new parenthood – a total and complete change of schedule.
Which brings me to the point of this post.
Last year, for the first time, we went on a spectacular vacation to Hawaii. It was amazing in every way. I had never really had a need for vacations before, but after going through treatment and not being able to go while seeing everyone else’s spring break vacations on Facebook, I was determined.
This year, with more advance warning, I had been saving up all year the points from spending on my business, to combine with the last five years of points from traveling for work. Until in April, we had enough to take my family on a two week European vacation to London and Paris, all on points to pay for 100% of the airfare and hotels.
I was so excited, and can say that I’ve never felt better about American Express than I did when calling to book the special hotels and flights in grand style, and telling the operator how much this trip meant to me.
After booking the trip in April, I set about getting the family to really enjoy preparing for the trip. Tour books, a European map puzzle, even a boardgame. I set the TV to record travel shows to those cities. I set aside plastic zipper bags that I thought would be good for our dirty laundry. I was into it.
As the software dragged along, I thought, this isn’t good. We should already be selling this by now. And then it dragged some more. And some more.
Until it finally became clear. We would be ready to go just when I would have to be away for two weeks. A two weeks we could now not afford to miss.
My husband said to me, “If this was my dissertation that was ‘due’, you’d cancel this trip and help me finish. That’s what we’re going to do with your software.” Sadly, he was right. It was exactly what we needed to do.
And just like that, the magical trip was cancelled.
“We’re not cancelling, we’re postponing. We can always go another time.” he reminded me.
The thing about losing people you love and getting a terminal illness yourself is that you lose the assumption that there will be another time. While it’s not a guarantee for any of us, it really feels like it’s not a guarantee at times like this. The trip had felt like an insurance policy, something that I would have at least done, if I ran out of time. I thought that was the life lesson – to do those things.
But apparently my life lesson was that you still have to make hard choices even when you don’t want to. Right now, it IS more important that we go to market than we go on vacation. I’m at peace with that, but it still stinks.
So as the Facebook pictures pour in of August vacations, I am home working, thinking of what today would have been on our itinerary. It’s taken a few days of moping to get to a better place with it and not just feel sick to my stomach.
Why am I telling you this?
First of all because
if it all looks easy, it’s not.
Sometimes you have to work really hard
for what you want.
Hopefully next summer we’ll have an even better trip, enjoying looking back on the year where all the hard work came together and turned into heaps of successes.
And second, because if you’re not out traveling the world and wishing you were, please know that you’re not alone.
Being positive doesn’t mean you can’t mope about things that stink when they do.
Finally, the good news is that we are here and alive to live with the day’s challenges.
I’d rather have that than any vacation.
If I’ll not be riding through the French countryside today, then at least I’ve put on some fancy shoes and my leopard dress. In my mind’s eye I am one scarf, sunglasses and convertible short of being Grace Kelly. That is, if Grace Kelly was off to meet with intellectual property lawyers downtown.
Much much love to you in doing whatever your day brings.
And by all means, please go enjoy www.trulyaccomplished.com and see what I’ve been spending all my time on.